25 Uses for Orange Peels

Oranges are a real ray of sunshine on the tongue, especially in the winter. The left over orange peels are tossed out in the garbage by most of us, but there’s a long list of alternative uses for the peels:

1. Compost

If you’re throwing them away anyway, consider adding them to a compost pile if you have the space and any use for fresh, healthy soil. Orange peels have all sorts of good stuff that will make your soil extra fertile.

2. Exfoliating Scrub

Ground orange peels with a dash of some other ingredients can be used as a powerful exfoliating scrub. Recopies can be found online through a simple web search.

3. Bath Oil

Rendering the essential oil of orange peels is easy, and there are several walk throughs available for it online. Adding a little orange peel oil to you bath will make it extra stimulating as well as imparting healthy benefits to your skin.

4. Potpourri

Dried orange peels have long been used as an ingredient in potpourri mixes for an extra citric tang. If your home feels a little musky or stuffed up, boiling some potpourri in water on the stove can really lighten the air.

5. Orange Zest

Orange peels were used in cooking for far longer than the fruit itself was used for cooking. The zest of oranges can be used in an endless variety of dishes, but it is perhaps best known as a flavor used in baking.

6. Flower Arrangements

Tastefully cut orange peels can be added to dried flower arrangements for extra color, shape, and style.

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7. Kindling

The oil in orange peels is flammable. To see for yourself, try squeezing a fresh orange peel in front of a candle. Be careful, because a small burst of fire will be the result. Dried orange peels retain some of this oil, and they will burn longer than twigs, giving a new fire more time to spread. Smells nice too.

8. Fire starter

Because the oil in orange peels is so volatile, I make my own high octane fire starter by squeezing the oil of orange peels onto a bundle of drier lint. When I start a fire out camping with some dried orange peels on top of it for kindling under the larger wood, it always impresses my fellow campers.

9. Cat Repellant

Cats generally don’t like strong smells, and orange peels are no exception. Adding orange peels around the outside of your home will keep the neighbors cats away, and rubbing fresh orange peels over the leaves of houseplants will teach your cat to keep to its own food bowl.

10. Candy

The use of orange peels in candy confections remains very popular in Europe. Sugar glazed orange peels are delicious. Dipped in dark chocolate, they are simply intoxicating. Take a look at your favorite internet cooking site for recopies.

11. Flavored Olive Oil

Aging olive oil with orange peels adds extra zest to the oil. Great on salads, pasta, you name it.

12. Ant Repellant

Got ants? Get orange peels, ants hate ’em. You can simply set some orange peels around problems areas, or use ground orange peels or oil in more visible areas. Helpful on picnics and camping too.

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13. Plastic

Okay, you probably can’t make this yourself. Scientists have discovered a method of making plastic by combining orange peels and carbon dioxide.

14. Brown Sugar Preservative

Brown sugar will become hard and crunchy in storage after a while. A few dried orange peels mixed in will draw away the moisture.

15. Cattle Feed

Another industry use for orange peels is by processing the left over peels made by the orange juice industry into feed pellets.

16. Bath Powder

If you don’t want to go to the trouble of rendering the essential oil of orange peels, you can simply wait for them to dry out and grind them into a fine powder. A mortar and pestle work best. The powder has a similar effect to the bath oil.

17. Deodorize Garbage Cans

The powerful aroma of orange peels can fight the nasty smells that accumulate in a garbage can over time. Try dropping the peels of a couple oranges in the bottom of the can before you put in the trash bag. This will also keep away bugs if you have them.

18. Sponge

Before the orange peel dries out, they can be used as a very effective sponge due to the degreasing properties of it’s oil. Give it a shot on a greasy stove top or sink some time.

19. Cleaning Dirty Water

Orange peels can be used as an effective cleaning agent to remove certain dies from industrial waste water from the textile industry.

20. Mosquito Repellant

Rubbing fresh orange peels over your skin will repel mosquitoes from biting you when you are exposed in the outdoors.

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21. Celloistic Ethanol

The millions of tons of orange peel waste produced by orange juice companies could possibly be converted into liquid energy. Scientists are in the process of researching the efficiency of this energy alternative.

22. Tobacco Additive

We all know smoking isn’t too smart, but smokers can add a little dried orange peel to their herbal blend for some extra flavor.

23. Lowering Blood Pressure

Herbalists recommend consumption of orange peels as an effective method of lowering your blood pressure. The Chinese have used the peels of bitter oranges as herbal medicine for thousands of years.

24. Aromatherapy

The oils of orange peels can be used as aroma therapy to treat the conditions of depression and anxiety.

25. Slug Repellant

Spreading some orange peels around the surface of the soil in your garden is an effective method of getting rid of slugs.